Life presents expected things in the social context. However, there are many ridiculous social expectations which can and should be ignored.
Social expectations can be seen in situations like being quiet at the movies, being polite, and opening doors for others. These are seen as positive and considerate.
Now, I know expectations are different according to various cultures, but they’re usually well known in those places. Some things are even universal.
Ridiculous expectations the society imposes on us
There are ridiculous social expectations as well. These are things that people expect, but just seem so unnecessary. These are things which seem petty and created by people who wish to be in control.
Let’s take a look at some things that have little relevance on our character:
1. Judging the book by its cover
Society expects us to judge people by the way they look or what they wear. While some people do wear certain things to reflect their personality, many wear what pleases society.
On numerous occasions, people have been labeled by wearing body jewelry or tattoos. They are thought to be dangerous or strange when many of these people are actually doctors and lawyers, professions that are thought to be quite mainstream.
Society expects us to act how we dress or to stay true to how we appear. The society also expects us to change ourselves to please the majority. This ridiculous social expectation creates “cookie cutter” individuals who lack character. Over time, we can become quite shallow if we listen to this lie.
2. Staying active on social media
I am starting to see the unhealthy effects of constantly staring at a screen. I also see the damage done by posting on social media, over and over, day after day. It is exhausting.
Being obsessed with things like social media can destroy your mental health and create in you a shell of a person. Social media feeds the ego, and with this feeding, the emptiness inside grows, never quite satisfied by a healthy stimulus. Sounds scary, doesn’t it?
3. Being in a relationship
While there’s nothing wrong with being in a healthy relationship or marriage, being with someone because you’re expected to is wrong. So many people go from one relationship to another because they are terrified of being alone. They are also afraid of how their friends and family think of them for choosing to be single.
One of the most ridiculous expectations is the belief that relationships are the only goals in life. The truth is, goals are what you strive for separately as much as with someone else. In fact, this is where the misconception of happiness coming from. You are supposed to find happiness within yourself, and, if you choose to be in a relationship, you can share this happiness with your partner.
4. Always being positive
I know people who are always negative, well most of the time. And yes, they can be draining. I also know plenty of people who always try to stay positive, and they usually destroy themselves. The reason why staying positive isn’t necessarily a good thing is because forcing yourself put aside negative feelings can cause physical health problems.
Think about it this way, if you hold negative feelings inside, you or any higher power you believe in, are the only ones who hear your thoughts about something that bothers you.
Expressing your negative thoughts and emotions allows you to release tension which is retained when you keep things bottled up. Don’t let your true feelings destroy you because they can.
5. Certain levels at certain ages
Have you ever heard someone make judgments about a person’s maturity level? They assume a certain age is when people should be matured enough to buy a home or settle down. If you’ve heard these things, you understand society’s ridiculous social expectations.
Listen, there is no set time or place when you should have things done in your life. If you don’t buy a house until you are 40, then that’s fine. If you aren’t settled down by 30, that’s also fine. The important thing to do is to be honest with yourself about why. It’s no one’s business but yours.
6. To agree with the majority
This might step on some toes, but I’m going to say it anyway. I battle conformity because many of my beliefs are old-fashioned. Over time, things have changed. While I am okay with some of the changes, I refuse to compromise my basic standards.
Yes, to each their own, meaning people have to make their own decisions about who they are and what they believe. However, they should never be pressed to say yes when they want to say no. That’s a basic right, even for those who do not wish to blend in with the flock. Standing apart is a good quality, not a bad one.
7. You must go to college
While I do want my children to attend college, I am learning that many people are successful without it. Yes, I said it! College is expensive and so many parents are going into debt by taking out loans to attend a university.
Some young adults choose other routes in life as well. This choice should be respected just as much as 4-6 years of a university education. In fact, some jobs and careers can be attained without a college education. You see, while there are plenty of arguments for college, there are just as many for skipping this road altogether.
Social expectations can leave us hollow
The truth must be said. If you continue to follow the petty expectations of life, you will neglect to build your true character. While some social expectations are healthy, there are so many others which just make no sense at all. Let’s allow people to live as their conscience guides them and we shall cultivate a better society for our world.
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